Automated Ultrasonic Fuel and Lube Oil Sensors (UFLOS)
Navy SBIR FY2014.1

Sol No.: Navy SBIR FY2014.1
Topic No.: N141-044
Topic Title: Automated Ultrasonic Fuel and Lube Oil Sensors (UFLOS)
Proposal No.: N141-044-0333
Firm: Progeny Systems Corporation
9500 Innovation Drive
Manassas, Virginia 20110
Contact: John Sevick
Phone: (703) 368-6107
Web Site:
Abstract: Effective on-board testing of fuel and lube oil quality is critical to maintaining equipment condition and preventing operating machinery shutdowns. Primary concerns are contaminants such as particulates (dirt, rust and metallic flakes, catalyst fines), water, and microbiological material and maintaining proper lubricating oil viscosity. Current testing procedures. Current U.S. Navy fuel and lube oil quality measurements utilize a series of manually labor intensive ASTM procedures and test kits. A real-time, low maintenance, easily integrated, compact sensor-based device to measure and report Navy or standard commercial values of water and particulate contamination and viscosity could provide several advantages over current techniques. Progeny Systems proposes to analytically and empirically investigate two ultrasonic modalities for application in fuel and oil contaminant measurement, including both concentration and particle count, and for application in viscosity measurement. This research leverages Progeny's previous research and experience in applying ultrasonic methods of detection, classification, and sizing of microscopic contaminants (bubbles, solid particles, biologics, water, oil) in flowing liquids. At the end of Phase I a proof of concept demonstration will be provided using real data from a flow circuit filled with Navy grade fuel or lubricants.
Benefits: Anticipated benefits include significant reduction in manpower and decreasing total ownership cost (TOC); reduced hazards associated with handling large volumes of fuel samples; faster, more quantitative and consistent results that could enable more accurate trend analysis and hence condition based monitoring (CBM); and potentially increased mechanical reliability as a byproduct of higher quality fuel and lube oil. Commercial applications beyond the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) installations include aviation, heavy transportation (freight and cruise ships, trains), construction equipment, truck fleets, back-up power power (data centers, hospitals, airports), and electricity generation (oil-fired boilers, turbines, generators).